Skip to main content

Full text of "Wordeater"

See other formats

-• i. 


Donna F. Aiello 
Judy Belfield 
Mary Ann DesMarais 
Kevin Lear 
Jeff Slattery 
David L. Sullivan 

In order to get a selection published in this issue, four of the above 
had to vote for acceptance. For the award winners, only John 
Stobart is responsible. 


November l8, 1988 

February 17, 1989 

April lU, 1989 

'All copyrights are retained by the authors, and materials may not be reprinted without 

their permission. 

POETRY: ^ %^ 

$12.50 to Maria Mellinger 
$12.50 to Nels Nelson 


$12.50 to Laurie Simmons 
$12.50 to Liz Hand 


$20.00 to Anna Danbury 

Manuscripts or cover designs 
must be submitted to John Stobart 
in Room C-IO69 by: 

November 18, I988 
Manuscripts will not be rettirned and SHOULD BE TYPED , j^ 


Nels Nelson 
Jerald Janes 
Paul Pritchett 
Mary Ann DesMarais 
Jimi Saieg 
Jerald Janes 
Amy Jo Junkins 
Meiria Mellinger 
Connie Legters 
Judy Belfield 
Maria Mellinger 
Cheri L. Workman 
Erika Nelson 
Mary Ann DesMarais 
Nels Nelson 
Amy Jo Junkins 
Jimi Saieg 
Amy Jo Junkins 
Lisa Stznitin 
Maria Mellinger 
Maria Mellinger 
Laiirie Simmons 
Maria Mellinger 
Judy Belfield 
Amy Jo Junkins- 
Maria Mellinger 
Connie Legters 
Nels- Nelson 
David L. Sullivan 
Nels Nelson 
Liz Hand 
Jerald Janes 
Nels Nelson 
Maria Mellinger 
Nels Nelson 
Mary Ann DesMarais 
Judy Belfield 
Liz Hauid 
LKevin Lear 

Guard Bird 1 

Diary Of An Argyle 1 

The Wolf, The Pig, And The Grapes 2 

Requiem For A Mostly Beagle Puppy 3 

Dolphin- 3 

Slap, Slap, Slap ■ h 

The Master Of Indecision/A Cliche ■ h 

Psychic Exchange h 

Trauma ■ — ■ h 

Car Trouble— • — ■ ■ ■ 5 

Free Flight- ■ — — ■ 6 

Acid Dreams — — • 7 

Psychedelic Lighter ■• ■ — ■ 7 

Had A Dream — ~ ■ 7 

One Of .Those Days— ■■ — ■ ■ 8 

It Was Months Ago ■ — 8 

The Day Fanny Died — — — 8 

Do You Know ■ .___-.__ .__ ._io 

To Be Distinct- — ■ ■ — - — ■ ■ ^— ■ 10 

Richard ' s Library — ~ — ■ -11 

A Private Meeting — ^ — ■ ■ —11 

S imple Song ■ ■ — ■■ — 11 

T"wo Lovers' Christmas Morning 11 

Thoughts At Three ■ — • 13 

Imaginaiy Lover ■ ■ 1 3 

Dear Linda— ■ ■ —13 

And From The Snov — — • >- ~lk 




A Child's Viev Of Sunset- 

My Momma Loved The Sun — — 

Jack' s Family Trip • 


Nels Nelson 


feel so regal nov. Katrina tells me that 
we are on sale. Across the room I see 
loafers and high-tops. Oh my God! I'm 
hanging in a Payless Shoe Source! 

Katrina curhs my anxiety when she 
tells me that we are over-priced and only 
a very nice and rich person would be like- 

ly to "buy us. I'm settling in the pack- 

Surreal pink plastic flamingo 

Guarding garden from somberness4* // 

Thrust aside work-a-day life >7 

Tear out the skull of conformity ores sed in flannel g^g 3,3 I relax. 

"Stand straight!" 
Obscene pink plastic flamingo 

Enshrined in shrubbery 

Anchoring absurdity with smithed legs 

One thing none can buy or fake 

Majestic pink plastic flamingo 
Waring a shade that shouldn't exist 
Only you, lawn-king 
Could fit such a coat 


Jerald Janes 


DAY 1 

I come into existence here. I haven't 
been informed of my birth, but it^s something 
I feel. It's as if a light has turned on 
somewhere and I find myself under it. 

r can actuailly sense my fibers coming 
together in this machine. I am moving along 
now. I would like to see myself, but there 
don't seem to be mirrors about. 

It's dark. There's a group of us 
rounded up in some sort of bin. I can 
see others. It woiild seem that I am an 
argyle sock. I wait. 

I'm chosen! Now I'm getting excited. 

she says. "How do 
you expect us to be boxight if you are 
wrinkled." Now I'm tense again. 

I am purchased by an overweight 
man in a business suit. He takes my 
mate and me to his home. He unwraps the 
package and puts us on the bed. Now he 
takes some holy water and sprinkles us. 
I'm refreshed. 

He takes a quick shower and re-enters 
the room. The large man is very ugly, 
nude and wet. He picks me up and I feel 

He is not tender; he is not kind. 
He rams his wet foot into me with the 
finesse of a drunk sixteen-year-old boy 
in his first conquest. 

I am violated. 

Katrina just takes it. She has 
patience. I can hardly stand it. I wish 
it was the good old days — just a whole 
bunch of us argyles talking politics in 
the holding bin. 

We ventiare out into the street. I 
can't see much because he is wearing 
bell-bottoms and I only see when they 
flap up on a leg-swing. 

We end up at a bar. All I can see 
now is the hax. Now there is a great 
pair of nylons next to us. The two peo- 
ple are talking. They're gone! This 
guy must not be social. 

We're off again. I'm bored. Is 

Some of the others in the bin say they've ^yi±s life? We end up in the living room, 
heard that argyles are privileged, that we jje is drinking heavily. He tears us off 
get the good life. They tell terrible stories and we end up crumpled in front of the 
of the plight of the sweat sock. I'm thankful. television. By Katrina' s suggestion. 

I'm placed in a plastic sleeve with 
another. She is crying in her sleep. I no- 
tice that she is a right sock. I suppose 
then that I am for the left. I take her 
example and try to sleep. 

DAY 2 

She wakes me. Her name is Katrina. Why 
don't I have a name. She calls me Xavier. I 

we sleep. 

DAY 3 

I'm kicked into consciousness when 
I find myself bouncing about in some 
soapy water. 

Katrina tells me that we are in a 
washing machine. It's not too bad, but 


( continued) 

Diary of an Argyle, continued 

the agitator sucks. 

It ' s over quickly and Katrina is on top 
of me. Her wet fibers feel tense against 
mine. She wants to talk. I can almost 
read her mind. She moves as I do towards 
the fabric softener despenser when the lid 
rips open. 

The fat fuck throws us into a dryer. 
This is not funny. I'm getting a headache 
and I don't consider this to be a great 
way of getting blown. 

Now it's dark. I'm not scared of 
much anymore, just frustrated. I wonder if 
I'm allowed to have a religion. 

She tells me that it's over. Katrina 
goes on about some gash in time that only 
occurs in clothes dryers. She says it's 
responsible for all those "odd socks" 
you find alone after you throw two in to 

I need to rest after that. I attempt 
a nap, but when I wake, I'm aJLone. Katrina 
is nowhere to be seen, and I have no idea 
where I am now. 

I feel movement and see that I am in 
a drain. Falling down the pipe^ I am thrown 
into sewage. Well, she did warn me about 
that time warp. 

After a long jovirney through all types 
of garbage and naughty-naughty, I have 
come to pause in what appears to be a 
sewage barge. 

The barge is on its way out into the 
ocean. I spend. my time by associating 
with turds and condoms. They tell me that 
their jobs have been dead-ends. I feel 
sorry for them but come to the reaJ.ization 
that I have come to a dead end myself. 

I sleep. 

DAY h 

I am being belched out into the ocean. 
It's a long drop to the ocean floor. I am 
trying to, hopefully, figure a way out of 
this but everything seems so, so, worthless. 

After long contemplation, I realize 
my mortality and surrender to the void. 

I feel much happier now. The sand 
and silt are covering me. It gets heavier 
and heavier as I get closer and closer. 

Death is only a state that I am trans- 
ferring into now. It's not bad. I think 
of Katrina and hope she is dead, too. 

All I can think of is sleep. I feel 
nothing now. 


Somewhere I feel a light switch 

And I am left under it . 
In the dark. 


Paul Pritchett 


Once upon a time (good cliche be- 
ginning) there was a wolf jumping up 
and down trying to get some grapes from 
a vine. The wolf kept jumping but he 
just couldn't reach them. 

"I keep jumping, but I just can't 
reach them," cried the wolf. 

A pig entered and saw the wolf. 

"What's wrong. Wolf?" queried 
the pig. (Using the word "queried" 
isn't a way to show that the pig is a 
fag. He never came on to me, so I 
don't think he is.) 

"I'm trying to get 2.3 grapes off 
the vine, so I can be like the other 
wolves. The other wolves have 2.3 
grapes, and appear to be happy," said 
the wolf. 

"The grapes are sour. I've got 
2,3 grapes at home and they are awful," 
yelled the pig. (The grapes being 
sour is the pig's subjective opinion. 
Personally, I like grapes.) 

"If I don't t2ry to get grapes, 
then what should I try to do with my 
life?" asked the wolf. 

"Have you ever read a book by the 
philosopheii Arthur Schoperhauer?" asked 
the pig. 

"No," answered the wolf, sure 
that he never had. 

"There's a copy at the library. 
Go," said the pig. 

The wolf went. (Good alliteration.) 

Fifteen days later (Wolves are slow 
readers , that ' s why it took so long . ) 

"Thank you, thank you," the wolf 
said gratefully. (For you deadheads 
out there . ) 

"So you read it, then," said the 
pig, "what did you think of it?" 

. .(continued) 

The Wolf, Tlie Pig ajid the Grapes, continued 

"I agree with most of the ideas, that it 
is evil to survive, amd that life is meaning- 
less," answered the wolf. 

"What did you disagree with?" asked the 


"Schopenhauer said that individual suicide 
wasn't a solution; this is where Schopenhauer 
made a mistake in his philosophy," said the 

"You are right!" yelled the pig. 

"Let's go kill ourselves," the pig and 
wolf said in unison. 

The wolf axid pig went to the wolf's 
garage, started the car, and choked to death 
on the fumes. 


Mary Ann DesMarais 

Together, the child and her puppy 

Both "bright, quick and so eager to please. 

The backyard becomes their Jungle, the lion and the 

hunter, their desert, the camel and the sheik, and 
their ocesm, the seahorse and the beautiful mermaid. 

In the rain they watch cartoons or "The Brady Bunch," 

curled up in a chair together with a half -eaten bag 
of potato chips. 

At night they sleep — comforted by each other's breathing 
and the warmth of being under the covers. 

Jimi Saieg 


I hear the noises. 

The music. 

The bitter sweet melody 

of a creature. 

So cool. 

Blue, white, but mournfully grey. 

Strictly beautiful. 

So natural 

Such freedom 

How envious I am. 

Freedom dwells, 

dwells in its fins. 

Its unpredictable, harsh, 

and gentle fins. 

The cries of happiness 

or the deep feeling, 

of loneliness. 

Th6 importunity to swim, 
to feel, 
to glide, 
to soar. 

Taste the salt of the sea. 

The tingly taste of freedom. 

The beauty 

of elegance. 

Unsighted feeling of secxirity. 

Waving color of a mignonette. 
Refreshing sensitivity. 
A mooring buoy. 


Together, the teenager and her dog. 

No more games, but a pat on the head as the girl 

runs out the door. 
No more afternoons together, there are practices to make. The simplistic beauty of 

and football games to watch, boys to chase. A dolphin. 
The lion, the camel, and the trusty seahorse locked away 

in a big, empty house, waiting and waiting for at night 

they sleep — -comforted by each other's breathing and 

the warmth of being under the covers. 

Alone, the young girl thinking back. 

Her friend, her companion, her trusty seahorse gone as 

the days they shared. 
There is no comfort for the pain, her tears, the 

loneliness . 
At night she sleeps — uneasy and restless, throwing the 

cotton blanket off her shoulders and onto the floor. 



Jerald Janes 


Slap, slap, slap, crash — 1200111, no regimen, "be free. 
From the ID, through the conscious, via the body. 
Interfacing with instruments. Amplify it so it can he 
realized. True music. There is no more question. The 
time is nov. Set it free. Set is free. The time is 
now. Set it free. Slap, Pow. Are we there yet? The 
sun is rising. Close yo\ir hooks. Open your mind. 
Ignorance is intelligence. Set it free. Slap, slap, slap 
Scratch — Boom 

The time is. 

Amy Jo Junkins 



Connie Legters 


Hit the brakes! Intersection's blocked — 

Why has she stopped in front of me? 

I'm stuck, can't hit reverse, cars behind, also! 

Now, the light's changing! 

I see that car coming on, fast! 

Seeing me stuck out here, he'll slow down! 

But he's not! He's coming on! 

The car in front moves on but I have no time. 

I have no way to protect myself! 

He's coming straight at me, can't he see me here? 

In that instant of time, his car rams into mine. 

I^ car becomes lost to me, now. 

I am yanked, my head breaks the windshield. 

I tiamble and am thrown out through the passenger door 

For a brief, terrible moment, I fly! 

Then I am crawling at the roadside. 

r think, "Wait, I'm not dead!" and I wasn't. 

A red curtain of blood takes away my vision; 

People approach, I hear many voices. 

I'm coming out of the spin. 

Broken teeth, probably all gone. 

But no, it's Just the gravel from the ground in my mouth. 

But now the pain! Viy head hurts, I can't bear this pain! 

Make it stop! Make this all go away, please? 

Where am I? Where is my car? Oh, my head hurts! 

Of course, I know my name! 

Yes, please, hold my hand, I'm so frightened. 

Stay with me, you are so kind. I hurt! 

Who hit me? Was he hurt? Where is he? Around where? 

All right, I'll try to stop crying but it hurts! 

Firm pressure on the woiind, so much bleeding. 

I seek composure as the ambtilance approaches. 


should I leave 
or should I stay 
I can't decide 

either way 

it's up to me 

or so you say 

but if I go 

and turn away 

later, then 

can I come back again? 


Maria Mellinger 


Two minds 



The bodies linger. 



Trauma, continued 

No, I cannot move, I'll "be sick if I do. So dizzy! 

Can't you make it stop hurting? 

Tied to a board, I am taken to the hospitals 

As they unload me, I throw up on their uniforms; 

Sorry, so very sorry! 

The other driver never even called. 

He did find some witnesses, however, 

Unable to see or move, I was not able to. 

Plastic surgery twice and still the scar lingers. 

Doctors tell me I covild easily have been killed. 

But I wasn't. I was lucky; I'm silive! 

Judy Belfield 


I skip-J ip-J ip-f ranged 

into the emergency lane 

pulled out the flasher button 

waited a few seconds 

for composure 

(taike a deep breath 

let it out slowly 

feel body go limp ) . 

Traffic whizzed past 

like fast zippers, 

seventy mph or more — • 


I thought, 

"I'm a fish flipf lopping on the grass; 

how dreadful to be so conspicuous." 

Sometimes, I've felt that way: 

hyper conscious of self. 

What happens to a lemming 

who decides not to swim? 

Tires were fine. 

Then what? 

Keep looking, hoping something 

would appear to be wrong 


but then what? 

I thought , 

how stupid to be so stupid. 

but just for a second. 

After all, when am I 

going to grow up, be a woman, roar, 

be competent 

a responsible person... 

And darn, if just that minute 

a man in a truck didn't stop. 

"When's last time you had your brakes checked?" 

he asked about my l6, 000-mile car 

and I knew 

I didn't need legs 

or him 

or anybody else 

to rescue me. 

I'd get myself sl tov ^° some gas station 

where some mechanic 

would say car -words I've heard but 

wouldn't be able to connect 

and he'd cheat me probably 

same as any clean-fingernailed sissy 

with car trouble 

same as any competent 

responsible person. 


I thought, well. Just for a second, 

how even worse it was 

that my legs weren't shapely 

and bare 

cause then it wouldn't matter 

that I was car-stupid — 


Meiria Mellinger 


Your oversized siinglasses 
Hide the laugh lines 
As well as the tears. 
And your demure style 
Camouflages the wild child 
Yearning to break free. 


Cheri L. Workman 

7 essel 
E nvis zoned 
S eductive 
S tatement . 
E ventually. . . 
L ovingly, 

formed "by the potter's hand. 

Erika Nelson 

I4ary Ann DesMarais 


Free like the wind 
And so8tring high 
Sometimes I'd like to be 
A butterfly. 

Yes, I love you 
And you love me 
But once in a while 
I need to be free. 

To soar on my dreams 
And reach for the sky 
Just like that beautifiil 
Little butterfly. 

So Just for today 

Let me be free 

To chase my own rainbows 

And celebrate me. 

I'll never forget our love 
And our happy times together 
I'll cherish what we had 
Now and forever. 

So free like the wind 

And soaring high 

Yes, just for today 

I am a butterfly. . .Good-bye. 



Forever the sun shines. 
Forever the waves roll in. 
But kites fly only from the magic 
Of a child's tiny hands. 

Nels Nelson 


Transmogrified into caterpillar 


Metamorphosized into butterfly 


Floating like dandelion fuzz 


Ingested by toad 


Converted into energy 



Amy Jo Junkins 

Jimi Saieg 



is it an illusion? 

Sitting in an empty bar. 

when branches 

feeling desolate. 

are reaching 

feeling dead. 

when the leaves 

Music low and lingering. 

are whispering 

wishing laughter 

' when the hark 

hating sorrow. 

is writhing 

Solemnly I stare — 

is it an illusion? 

repeating thoughts. 

when the grass 

feeling desolate. 

is shrinking 

feeling dead. 

when the rocks 

wishing laughter. 

are growing 

hating sorrow. 

when flowers 

Smell of smoke. 

are "bleeding 

clouds my mind. 

is it an illusion? 

Insanity hovers. 

when the night 

wanting this — 

is grinning 

wishing that — 

when the moon 

feeling desolate- 

is glaring 

hating sorrow. 

when the stars 

Take away the lurking fog. 

are screaming 

but never 

is it an illusion? 


when yoMX house 

never, impose — 

is melting 

never snatch. 

when the walls 

my psychedelic lighter 

are smoking 


when your body 


is falling 

is it an illusion? 

or Just insanity 

Amy Jo Junkins 



Had a dream 

and the grass was green 

in my mind's eye 

who can tell me 

I saw your face 

what it means 

darkened by shadows 

when my heart feels 

glistening with tears 

who can tell me 

what it means 

when my heart feels 

two different things 

Had a dream 

in my mind ' s eye 

1 saw before 

how things used to be 

when the sky was blue 

two different things 

Had a dream 

in my mind's eye 

I saw you and I 

when a touch was love 

and love was the world 

hand in hand 

together forever 

but nothing lasts 

Had a dream. 



Lisa Strubin 

Maria Mellinger 



Alarm clock was "broken 

so I woke up too late. 

Jumped out of bed, 

tried to get the morning straight. 

Mouthfiil of Rice Krispies 

but I couldn't control my sneeze. 

Nov mjr poor table looks like 

it has some kind of disease! 

Used baking soda on my teeth, 

all out of Crest toothpaste. 

Oh there isn't time to waste! 

Clothes, are in the latondry, 

so nothing is clean 

Guess I'll wear my mom's, 

I Just hope I won't be seen. 

Great! My contact lens just fell 

into the bathroom sink. 

I'm having a nervous breaJcdown, 

I just know I'm at the brink! 

Can't find my makeup, 

so my face will just be bare. 

But I'm not trying to impress anyone. 

So why should I even care? 

Out the door and into the car, 

figures, I'm out of gas. 

¥ait til I get my brother who drained it, 

I'll really kick some ass! 

Days like these aren't too common. 

Thank GodI I'd never last! 

Why is a cop behind me? 

Oops! Sorry officer, was I too fast?! 

Laurie Simmons 

It was months ago 

That I cried 

And prayed to a god 

That I didn't know existed. 

It hurt inside. 

And that pain manifested itself 

In the slender scars 

Upon my arms. 

And I knew. . . 

If only you. . . 

It was minutes ago 

That I cried 

And prayed to a god 

That I didn't know existed. 

And now my eyes are burning 

With the dried and salted tears; 

And still it's deep inside me. 

And still it hurts inside. 

And if only I knew. . . 

If only you. . . 

Maria Mellinger 


the past 

is merely the remains 
of what ancestors 
thought was 
Important . 



Fanny was our nondescript farm dog. 
She resembled a miniature collie, but was 
■vrtiite with a few black patches on her head 
and legs. To me, she was more beautiful than 
any purebred. She was a gentle creature, 
\fh.o worshipped me with big brown adoring 

During the long summer months, when I 
was off from school, Fanny was my pal and 
confidante. She tolerated being dressed 
up with an old blouse and floppy hat. The 
big oak tree by the geirage became otir fairy 

castle. There, between two snowball 
bushes, Fanny and I were transformed in- 
to fairy princesses or movie stars. I 
often tried to coax our cream-colored 
tom cat into our make-believe play, but 
Cat preferred to sneak around out of 
arms' length and observe our silly antics 

Since dress-up was not Fanny's 
favorite pasttime, we searched out other 
activities. She liked to charge through 
the weeds, startling grasshoppers and 
butterflies, while I gathered armfuls 



The Day Fanny Died, continued 

of daisies. The daisies would decorate ^v-he 
culinary masterpieces I prepared from water 
and dirt. Fanny wouldn't sample any of my 
mud pies, but she gladly accepted half of my 
peanut-butter and jelly sandwich, when I 
could talk Mama into letting me take it out- 
side. I woiild laugh when she got the peanut- 
butter stuck in the top of her mouth. She 
loved every minute of the ordeal. To show 
her gratitude, she gave me face-washing 

Tired out from playing, hot sultry af- 
ternoons would find us resting in the cool 
shade of our castle. With Fanny's head on 
my knees, I poured .out my thoughts and dreams 
to her. She watched my every move with devo- 
tion, occasionally whining for a scratch 
behind her ears. ¥e were carefree smd happy. 

Our idealistic relationship came to an 
abrupt halt one summer morning. I woke up to 
hear my Mama's angry voice in the kitchen. 
As I climbed out of bed and crept closer 
so I could hear better, I heard Mama tell- 
ing Daddy a story that brought fear to my 
heart. Apparently, for several weeks some- 
thing had been stealing and eating the chick- 
en eggs. That morning. Mama had discovered a 
hole in the side of the fence arotind the 
chicken house. Broken shells from several 
eggs lay on the henhouse floor and there sat 
Fanny licking her lips. She was caught in 
the act. Mama was furious! The additional 
money she got from selling the eggs at mar- 
ket was badly needed. There was no trial or 
Jury, just the sentence. Death! The words, 
"shoot her" tore into my brain like a biillet. 
Shoot Fanny! No, no, there had to be a mis- 

As tears rolled down my cheeks, I ran to 
the kitchen pleading Fanny's case, but the 
look on Mama's face stopped me cold. Her 
mind was made up. Daddy would take his rifle 
and Fanny to the woods, the sooner the better. 
We all knew an egg-sucking dog was of no value. 
The odds were that she would progress from 
eggs to chickens. 

I turned, ran to my room, ajid grabbed 
my clothes. Choking sobs shook my small 
body. "Please, God! Don't let them hurt 
Fanny!" I quickly dressed, and eased quietly 
out the front door. 

Fanny was tied to the big oak tree. She 
met me with excited little yelps as she strained 
at the end of the rope. I grabbed her in a 
bear hug, digging my face deep into the fur 

at her neck. She squirmed and wiggled un- 
til I relaxed my grip. As the contin- 
uous flow of tears dripped on her, she 
licked them off my face. This time, she 
didn't understand. I was losing my best 
friend. I was trying to tell her good- 
bye, but a suffocating pain inside pre- 
vented any words. Only tears poured 
out. I wished time would stand still. 

A shadow fell across my face, and I 
realized that Daddy had walked quietly up. 
I screamed at him, "Please, Daddy, don't 
hurt Fanny!" He gently pried my arms from 
Fanny's small body and in a firm voice, 
told me to go into the house. At that mo-= 
ment, as I looked up at my Father, I hated 
him with all my heajrt. My feelings 
must have showed in my eyes because he 
looked away quickly, but not before I 
saw the pain in his eyes. He was hurt- 
ing too. 

My feet dragged as I went into the 
house. I quickly pressed my face to the 
windowpane for a last look at Fanny. 
Daddy untied the rope from around her 
neck, and started walking toward the barn- 
yard. Fanny bounced about, glad to be 
free again. As Daddy picked up his rifle 
by the barnyard gate, he quietly called 
to her. She bounded after him, eager 
for a walk. 

I watched them walk slowly past the 
barn, following the well-worn path around 
the pond into the woods. Once I saw Dad- 
day stop and pat Fanny on the head. I 
knew he loved her too. My last glimpse of 
Fanny was of her following dutifully 
behind my Father as the two figxires slow- 
ly disappeared among the trees. 

Only a few moments had passed, when 
the shot rang out. I gaspedl I^ eyes 
quickly returned to the wooded area. .'Ul 
I saw were some startled blackbirds . 
Fanny was dead. I felt numb. I knew that 
part of a seven-year-old girl's heart 
also died that day. 

We never spoke of Fanny again. I 
think Mama and Daddy knew there was nothing 
they could say to make me understand, I 
wondered where Daddy had biiried Fanny, 
but was too proud and angry to ask. I 
also never shed any tears for her in their 

It wasn't until weeks later, after 


( Continued) 

The Day Fanny Died, continued 

eggs continued to disappear, that Mama 
discovered that it was Cat who had 
regularly raided the henhouse. Fanny 
apparently had found the hole in the 
fence that morning and was licking up the 
remnants of egg that Cat had left. Mama 
and Daddy realized then that there was 
no way a dog coxild have climbed up to 
the hen's nests. 

My Fanny was vindicated, but that 
knowledge did little to mend a little 
girl's broken heart. Even now, three 
decades later, a woman's heart still 
aches for her lost pal. 


Maria Mellinger 


Do you know what the wind in a pine tree 

SoTinds like? you asked me, and No, 

I replied, I'm from the city. 

Ask me how the Sears Tower sways 

Or what the Hare Krishna that stops you on 

the street 
Will say. These questions I can answer. 

But do you know what the wind in a pine tree 
Soiinds like? And No, I answer again. 
But I will learn if I must, and 
Describe it to you, and you will have to 
Trust me when I taJce you to the top floor 
Or do not rescue from the sidewalk chant. 

Judy Belfield 


A rush of morning 
felt in mid-afternoon 
a high-sun sky with 
breezes alively blue 
lungs inhale ferociously 
intent on intoxication 

an attack of knowing 
intense futility 

this blue-breezed 

insanely fresh-aired day 


a brown paper bag prize 

to cbllect carbon dioxide— 

a concentrated cure 

killing hyperventilated enthusiasm 

for pointless joy 

another moment violently crashes 
like thunder in the bones 
(an acute familiarity with emptiness) 
then ebbs away 

is it possible 


to want to continue? 


Amy Jo Junkins 



purple grass 

and yellow sky 

bright blue sun 

and birds that fly 

This is the land I live in. 

crows that swim 

and trees that talk 

fish that dance 

and weeds that walk 

This is the land I live in. 

the men smell sweet 

and braid their hair 

love is gone 

and life is fair 

This is the land I live in. 

truth is evil 

and Satan is god 

facts are lies 

and pride ' s a facade 

This is the land I live in. 

left is right 

and right is wrong 

they go both ways 

all day long 

This is the land I live in. 

the sun is old 

swollen and red 

the stars are dim 

and the moon is dead 

This is the land I live in. 


Maria Mellinger 

Nels Nelson 



The ring of the bell 

Signals a presence: 

An old woman, 

Bent and broken. 

Her work clutched in her hands. 

It is merely a notebook. 

The words written in crayon: 

Let the feeling swirl around me 

Oh, I don't know why 

Looking to the afternoon 

I see the morning sky 

Got nowhere to go, brother 

Got no one to see 

Guess I'll sit here on the porch 

How To Grow Flowers In Hotel Rooms By Candlelight And get off of iieing me 

And you take it , Bisy Backsoon runs on by 

Knowing it is a thing a beauty. To see what he could see 

Never stops to catch his breath 

******** His soul is never free 

Got nowhere to go, brother 

Connie Legters Got no one to see 

Sun sets in the western sky 

It's rising up for me 

A PRIVATE MEETING Politician rambles on 

About what has to go down 

Once insidCj the flowers pull us; Listen to his dribble-drabble 

Their scent, heavy and identified, leads us in. He used to be a clown 

The room is large, circular in shape,. Got nowhere to go, brother 

That we may emcompass around him. Got no one to see 

Wboden chairs wait to be filled. Life went racing down the street 

With tissue placed strategically about. He stopped to talk to me 

On a lighted stand, aside, we sign. 


This rite of burial we call funeral. 
A final visit, the dreadful farewell. 
He lookds dead, we wish he weren't; 

In his good blue suit, he greets us. 
I moiorn thro\igh dry eyes. 

We ride to the cemetery in heavy sadness. 
And on a shaded hillside, we leave him. 

Later, I return alone. 

Standing there before the grave, I can cry, 
He was there for me, always; 

The heart and soiiL of my \ini verse. 
A funeral parting would not do. 

That was all for smother reason. 
Rest well. Father, and please kiss Mother for 



David L. Sullivan 


I stare outside from the window. 

Shivering at the sight of snowflakes 

Falling upon the lawn. 

I embrace my body with my arms 

And place my head against the cold glass 

As I grow lost into thoiight. 

Suddenly I hear the door knock, 
me. And I rush over into the den 
To see who it is. 
I peer out through the peephole 
And find you standing there. 
Trembling in the bitter coldness of the 

morning . 
Excited, I open up the large oak door 
And drag you into the den. 
And as you shake the melting snow off you. 
You notice with stark amazement ray naked 



Tvo Lovers' Christmas Morning 

Embracing your own wet essence. 
A soft giggle comes from you 
Which soon sends me chuckling. 

After we have both quieted, 

I gaze into your eyes 

And plant a kiss upon your lips 

As one of your arms embraces me. 

The other's hand mussing my hair... 

God, this feels so MAGNIFICENT!!! 

And for a while we remain in this fashion. 

Hugging, kissing, caressing, and just plain 

Until we gradually part, gazing into each 

other ' s eyes . 

With my arms still embraced around you, 

I walk you over towards the fireplace 

And slowly remove every stitch of clothing 

From your petite essence. 

From your hat, scarf, coat, and boots 

Down to your blouse, slacks, booties, and 

underwear . . . 

And I do this VERY slowly. 

Afterwards I take a nearby quilt 

And wrap it around your shoulders 

As you free one of your arms 

To softly stroke my face. 

In response I grant a kind smile 

And kiss your upper wrist and open palm. 

You then passionately open up the quilt. 

Pulling me towards your baby-smooth naked- 

And embracing me as you wrap the thick blanket 

Back around the both of us. 

Remaining within this embrace, 

We walk over to the sitting room 

Where I sit you down upon the bean cushion 

Before the picture window. 

Planting another kiss upon your forehead, 

I wrap you back inside the quilt snugly 

And leave for the kitchen. 

Where I fill two massive mugs full of hot 


And spray them on top with mounds of whip- 
ping cream. 

I place the mugs onto a shiny brass platter 

Along with a batch of glaze-laced cinnamon 


That I made from scratch. 

Sighing in earnest, I pick up the platter 

And return to the sitting room. 

Watching you stare warmly out at the snow- 
flakes , 
I place the platter upon the floor 
And slide back in beside you. 
Wrapping myself back into the quilt. 

As I squeeze your warming- body close to 


I prop you up onto my lap. 

Passing to you a steaming mug of cocoa. 

Your eyes glitter in joy 

As you gently sip the sweet dark liquid. 

I place two fingers inside your gentle 


Caressing their silky tenderness 

As you turn to face me. 

Plopping a froth of whipping cream 

Upon the tip of my nose. 

Making you giggle again and me laugh 

aloud . 

I take up my own mug 

And place a large wad of cream 

Onto the tip of your nose, 

In which you have a definite problem 

In trying to lick it off . . . 

We have somewhat of a problem 

In trying to suppress our excitement. 

And finally we end up bursting in rau- 
cous laughter. 

And when we finally calm down. 

You drop down from my lap back onto the 

bean cushion. 

Placing a french lick on my nose 

To catch the jjie3_-t-j_ng dripping cream. 

Grinning proudly 

I do the same towards you. . . 

It ends up in a long, torrid kiss. 

We sit back a little ways afterwards 

And sip delightfully from our mugs . . . 

You have such an ENLIGHTENING way of 

doing that. 

I reach over to grab a cinnamon square. 

Planting it firmly between yo\ir teeth. 

I take the other end of the sweet pas- 

As we both begin to chew on it . . . 

Our lips collide once again. 

With my free arm I hold you so close to 


That we can actually feel each other's 

heartbeats . 

So as we sit cuddled up 

Sipping our cocoa and eating our squares 

We gaze out at the lawn. 

Watching the beautiful display of snow- 

Falling upon the ground. 

And as the crackling of the flame 

Inside the fireplace 

Dances within our ears. 

Our heads meet to show 

Our bond of everlasting love... 


( continued) 

Two Lovers' Chri^tma,s Morning, continued 

What more could t-wo people ask for 
In an intimate MORNING? 

Merry Christmas. 


Nels Nelson 


These are stagnstnt times we are living in 
this podunk down, and I am fittingly living 
them in stagnant ways. What I wouldn't give 
to hop on a hike right now and screw one on, 
screaming through hedtime at 150+ miles per 

To take that first hahy step in search 
of that something which has no name, to race 
past reality and eat the weird society, cram- 
ming their fears down their throats, no wor- 
ries, no haggage. Just pure speed-freedom. 
But then I get slammed onto the floor of here 
and now. It is good to dream, though. 

But what is keeping me from saying fuck 
it all and snagging my dreams? The same god- 
damned society I hate so much. There is no 
true independence, and the life of an outcast 
drifter is sure to be a lonely one. Damn it 
all, and make the "best of what I have; a feast 
of friends and a head full of dreams. 


Liz Hand 


My reasoning screams out in protest and in 
fear, reminding me that he is but a 
figment of my imaginings. 

Where are you when the distance between us 
on the sofa has grown from a crack to 
a chasm? 

He is there. 

Always present, craving even more my need 
for him grows daily. 

Where will you be, when they put me in the 
cushioned room and pronounce me mad? 

He will be there. 

In his triumph I will have become his -:, 
alone, driven to him out of loneliness 
and disappointment. 

Where are you when cries for acknowledg- 
ment echo off these painted walls? 

He is there. 

Quietly, convincingly, more and more se- 
ducing me away from reality. 

He offers me escape. 


Where are you when I need you? 

He is there. 

He is more real to me than you are, even though^ 

he doesn't truly exist. ^ 

Guilt wrings my heart like a sodden rag, for 

a love I can not even consummate 

Jerald Janes 


Dear Linda: 

Hi. I was on a talk show yesterday 
but I didn't have all the answers to all 
those questions so I had to run quickly 
off the TV set , out into the street , into 
the cruel world. 

So I decided first to eat, but after 
contemplation decided to catch a taxi to 
my pal, Sam's house but when I got there 
Sam was missing. Instead a cheap, ignorant 
imitation in a rayon/cotton stood in the 
doorway and screamed at me, "You aren't m;jr 
pal anymore ! Get away from here ! " So I 

So instead of finding the organic Sam 
I found the Uth dimension which really 

Where are you as I lay cold and lonely in my b ed?^ fucked my day up because each move- 

He is there. 

He reaches out to me his spectral arms and I 
give way, allowing him to comfort me. 

Where are you when I am in need of loving re- 
assurances and kind words? 

He is there. 

He speaks to me in loving tones and soft, not 
sharp and edged in anger. 

ment I made multiplied and I had so much 
external, stimulus that my senses overloaded 
and within seconds my mind tripped volun- 
tarily which really helped to hinder ray 
perceptions all that much more. All of a 
sudden there is this hand on my left 

shoulders that didn't multiply so I was 
led to believe that it was from the 3rd 

-13 - 


Dear Linda, continued 

dimension when I find myself being pulled 
into the 3D world of 

But Linda, I don't care for Cleveland. 

To make a long story short, work is 
good, my family is wonderful, school is 
fine (I'll tell you about my writing class 
some day) and I have this strange feeling 
that a prism of intelligent light is fol- 
lowing me aroTond on Tuesdays. 




Nels Nelson 


Nels Nelson 


Good day Sol 

Bleeding honey sweet dew dipped goodness 

Onto a family packed cereal commercial 

Will you give me peace today, respected 

Douse joxw punch behind complacent clouds 
TaJte a rest , old master , or enlighten 

someone else 
You see, I am thirsty like the earth 
Another conversation with you will burn 

me like a match 
To be picked from the sand and given a 

ride with the wind 
This freedom I do not need 
No offense projected, dear sir 
But I am too young to die 



I bought a new sweater that 
A morbid blue, in retrospect 
And the carolers came in the rain 
Delivering an overlooked summons 
I went to the theater 
Leaving the book unfinished 
Hoping never to read the last chapter 
After the movie, mother said the book had ended 

But how? I didn't finish. And. from the snow 

1 bought a new sweater Someone called out my name, you know. 

On the day my grandma died As I looked towards 

The light reflected 
**«»**»» From your window. 

Maria Mellinger 



And the moon was. high 

With a single star in the sky, 

And with me alone 

Down here on the ground. 

So when the wind blows cold. 

Just call out my name, you know. 

Or look to the sky 

And see me there. 

And in the wintertime. 

Don't feel for this heart of mine. 

Because I can still see 

The light reflected 

From your window. 


Mary Ann DesMarais 

Judy Belf ield 

As I sit 

Pressed against a 
Miniature green jungle 
Half smothered 

under hot skin-- 
And pricking my hands . . . 

the sun 
Hangs sulkily 
In lowstrung lavendar skies 4^^^^^ ^^^^^ g"' g^apoi^t is "everything coming through. 
Undecided whether 
To retreat 

or advance. 


If age wields the steam-iron, reason, 
which presses out the wrinkles of fear 
creased in the psyche God-knows-when 
then, very soon, after maturity deepens 
phobias are explained 
as if poured into a funnel 

A breeze 

Pushes sluggish clouds 

from my sight 
The grass 

Performs a frantic dance 
And is still. 

I close my lids only 

for a moment and 
It is gone. 

When I open them again 
The sun has faded. . . 
The crickets are out 
And mother 
Is calling me in 

for supper. 


Very soon, I shoiild know 
the sobriety of adulthood 
which sneers at darkness 


My Momma loved the sun. She loved the 
sight, feel, smell, and the taste of the 
sun. She always said things tasted better 
outside on a sunny day. She said a day of 
good hard work in the sun increased the ap- 
petite and improved your sleep. 

My mother engaged in several various 
forms of sun worshipping. She never laid 
out in the sand all lavished with oil for 
cosmetic reasons, but at the end of summer 
she was Just as brown. The good Lord, know- 
ing my mother would love the sun, endowed 
her with a rich olive complexion that never 
burned. Good thing, too, because my Momma 
loved the s'un. 

Perhaps the only thing my Mamma didn't 
care for was what the sun did to her hair. 
Mother had waist-length dark brown hair 
which exposure to the s\in's strong rays 
caused to have copper-red highlights. By the 
end of summer she had a halo that shone like 

and says, as my mother confidently stated, 
"If it's meant to be, it's meant to be." 
Soon, I should feel that peace 
that nonchalance in the face of 
once-catastrophic danger : 
the thing lurking in the night 
breathing rhythmically in the black corners 
of the bedroom; 
the thing will vanish as magically 
as the time between now 
and vast winter silences 
tucked to the chin against wolves and alligators 
hiding in the obsidian shining ink of longago sleeptime. 
Then, the choking dread 
of childhood, shed like too-tight skin, 
will fall away to a succession of 
long-winded sighs, 
a drawn-out melody 
piped through a well-aged larynx; 
and, finally, life will begin 

as it should have 
when hopes were as plentiful as pennies 


a new penny when she stood in the sun.- 
I always thought it was rather pretty, 
but Momma hated it. Over the years she 
was on the eternal quest to find just the 
right hat to keep the sun off her hair. 
She accumulated several sun-hats over the 
years, but they were always too big and. 

cumbersome, or too hot, or too small, I 
don't think she ever found the perfect 
hat to protect her beautiful hair. 

One of the sun-worshipping activities 
Momma engaged in was hanging out the wash. 
Now you may consider this a chore, but my 
mother had a perfectly good electric 
clothes dryer in the basement that she 
used all winter. Yet, come the first warm 



t^ Momma Loved the Sun, continued 

days of spring, Monma would drag out the 
A.a\indry baskets and hang line after line 
of freshly-washed clothes. Now the dryer 
was a lot easier and a lot mora/handy , so 
she must of just liked hajiging out clothes. 
Rememher, my Momma loved the sun. 

Momma always said she did it because 
she saved on electricity smd because 
she liked the smell of clothes hxing out 
to dry. However, in a unguarded moment 
you would catch my mother standing with 
a piece of laundry halfway to the line, 
head laid back, eyes closed loving the 
smell of the s\in, and feeling its warmth 
on her face. So I always knew that 
Momma hung out her laundry because it 
was a good excuse to stand in the sun 
and Just enjoy. My Momma loved the sun. 

Another one of Momma's sun-loving 
activities was gardening. She didn't 
Just raise a few flowers to brighten up 
the yard. She grew flowers for their color, 
texture and smell. Momma grew flowers 
to attract birds and butterflies, but 
mostly she grew flowers and herbs of all 
description to make into potpoiori as 
well as seasonings. She would go out 
early in the morning to gather petals, 
buds , and leaves , then lovingly lay 
them out to dry. In the sxin, of course. 
Now I've heard some people dry herbs 
by hanging them in their attics, or some 
other suitably dark dry place, but my 
Momma would patiently turn and check and 
stir her screens laden with petals 
spread out in the sun because . . . 

From her dried flowers and herbs she 
would make bowls of potpouri to bring the 
smell of summer inside when the house had 
to be shut up for winter. Which was not, 
by the way, my mother's favorite season. 
Too cloudy, if you know what I mean. She 
spent those long winter evenings with her 
chair pulled up next to the fire usually 
scented by some herb or other, sewing up 
little bags of all concoctions to sweeten 
up drawers and freshen closets. On the 
top shelf of the linen closet was a Jar of 
special little bags of herbs reserved for 
use only when one of us was sick. Momma 
would wash our faces, straighten our beds, 
amd slip one of these little sacks beneath 
the pillow case to help chase away the odor 
of sickness and cheer the sick one. 

yfy mother also had a vegetable garden. 

which was only natural "because to do veil, 
a vegetable garden had to be placed in 
full sun. Momma spent many happy hours 
pTilling weeds and talking to her plants 
coaxing them to produce in abundance. 
And produce they did. Momma would carry 
her weathered old half bushel basket 
into her garden loading it down with all 
sorts of fresh produce. She worked along 
the rows harvesting as she went. Everythi 
went into the basket together to be se- 
parated later when Momma emptied her old 
friend onto the plank picnic table. She 
would sort, inspect, and finally wash 
under a running hose» 

It seems to me that school and can- 
ning season always commenced about the 
same time. I can remember many a Sept- 
ember, afternoon when lid rush home anxious 
to shed my hot school dresses and slip int 
shorts, only to find my mother wiping the 
rims from row upon row of freshly-canned 
or pickled produce. Momma would hold a 
Jar of bright orange carrots or deep 
ruby red beets and remark that nature's 
bounty sealed in pristine glass vere the 
gardener's Jewels. In no time, she'd 
have the shelves of her basement pantry 
literally brimming with nature's Jewels 
of every color. 

yiy mother ' s love for the sun never 
waned and never left her. Even now when 
I think of her, I see her standing by 
the clothes line hanging up the laundry. 
Her long hair now bleached a dazzling 
white by an empathetic sun, head thrown 
back, eyes closed Just loving the sun. 

There are some that will tell you 
that the sun killed my Momma, but it is 
Just not true. Yes, they did find her 
lying on her back, face turned skyward, 
next to her rose garden. Her lovely 
olive skin warmed feebly by the sun, but 
no longer by life. Heat exhaustion, some 
said. Sun stroke, others said. But I 
knew better. I know that on that warm 
sunny stmmier afternoon my Momma had been 
out working in her gardens , worshipping 
the sun in her own quiet way. She Just 
figured she'd lived a good long life. 
So, looking up at the smd. that she loved 
so much, she lay down on the sweet grass 
and Just became a part of the smell, 
feel, and warmth of that sun. 

Because my Momma loved the sun. 



Kevin Lear 


"C'mon, kids, I can hear Mickey Mouse 
calling our names!" Jack said. 

"Get real. Dad. Disneyland is thousands 
of miles away," Lenny said. 

"Shut up, Lenny!" Lenny's little 
brother, Myron, said. "If Dad said he heard 
him, he heard him." 

"Thanks for helping. Mother," Jack said 
to his wife. "Maybe next year I can afford 
to take everybody." 

They finally loaded all the luggage 
into the station wagon, and the three males 
in the family set off on their trip to Flor- 
ida. While si,' Jack is taking a vaca- 
tion, his wife, Lotty, continues to bring 
home the bologna by working at a factory. 

Myron said, "How far is Florida, Dad?" 

Jack scratched his head and said, "Gee, 
I don't know, Myron. It should take a couple 
of days." 

Lenny said, "The way you drive. Dad, 
it'll be a couple of days." 

"I drive the legal limit, 55 miles per 
hour . " 

"It's 65, Dad." 

Jack scratched his head, "Gee, is it? 
Since when?" 

"Almost two years ago." 

"Well, it's cheaper to drive 55 anyway. 
And safer, too." 

"Are we there yet?" Myron asked. 

Lenny said, "We Just got on the damn 
highway . " 

"Watch the language in front of your 
brother , Lenny . " 

"Wfell, if he's gonna be like that the 
whole trip, I'd rather stay home. Go back 
and get mom! " 

"You know jovoc mother can't go. Kids 
sleep free at this hotel; your mother would 
be another twenty bucks a night." 

"Well, I hope he sleeps most of the way," 
Lenny said. 

"Jeeze, he should," Jack said. "He was 
up all night, almost. I finally got him to 
sleep last night about U:00 a.m." 

"How'd you finally get him to sleep?" 

"Well, I gilded the lily a little bit. 
I said Mickey Mouse would drum him out of 
the Mouseketeers if he didn't get to sleep." 

"And he believed it? When I was younger, 
I never believed none of that bullshit you 
told me," 

"Jeeze! I told you to watch the lan= 
guage!" Jack looked back at a sleeping 
Myron. "I guess it's OK; he's sleeping." 

Lenny said, "I remember I used to 
watch a lot of wrestling. I asked you if 
it was real, and you said it was fake, but 
you could get UOO stitches." 

"You can get UOO stitches. Big Injun 
Saul got hiort in a match with the Polish 
Tornado , Jose Holmes . " 

"I remember that. Supposedly Big In- 
jun Saul was put out of wrestling. I saw 
him a couple of years later when he was 
known as Kurt is Casanova, the Lithuanian 

"Yeah, but he had a scar on his ribs 
where the UOO stitches were," Jack said. 

"Well, all I know is you told me a lot 
of bull when I was young." 

"It was for your own good. Son. It's 
a cold cruel world out there. It's better 
to be in a dream world when you ' re yoxing . " 

Jack had the cruise control set at 
U5 miles per hour. Jack shook his head in . 
disgust at how fast the csirs were passing 

"Jeeze! Look at how fast those cars 
are goin', Lenny. They think we're on 
the Audobon in Brazil." 

"Dad, the speed limit is 65. That 
means it's OK to go 75." 

"One of these days, I'll make a citi- 
zen's arrest." He shook his fist at a 
passing car. "I'll show those bastards!" 

Jack attempted to make his first citi- 
zen's arrest. He pressed down on the 
accelerator and caught up to his would-be 
criminal . 

As he pulled up even with the offen- 
der's car, he got the attention of the 
driver . 

Jack pointed to the shoulder and said, 
"Pull over!" 

The driver obviously couldn't hear, so 
he said, "What?" and put his hand next to 
his ear. 

"I said pull over!" he pointed again. 

The driver raised his middle finger 
and passed Jack, 

"Dammit! These drivers on the road 
today are nuts!" 



Jack's Fajiaily Trip, continued 

Lenny said, "At least we went a 
little faster for a change. Don't slow- 
down nov." 

"If I go 75 miles per hoiir, I'm no 
"better than the rest of those jerks. I'll 
go 55, and that's as fast as I'm going." 

Lenny fell asleep so Jack turned 
on his favorite radio station, WHIK, a 
country music station. 

Jack began to sing along, "Drop kick 
me Jesus through the goaJ, posts of life..." 

Myron woke up. "Are we there yet?" 

Jack said, "No, buddy. Go back 
to sleep, big boy." 

Myron banged on Jack's head vith his 
fists. "You woke me up with your singing! " 

"You guys Just don't appreciate good 
music. Rock 'n Holl has gotta go!" 

"I'm hiongry. Dad. Let's stop at 
White Castle," Lenny said. 

"Ko, let's stop at McDonald's. I want 
a Happy Meal," r^on said. 

"Enough! Those places charge an arm 
and a neck. I packed some bologna and 
egg salad sandwiches." 

"Jeeze, Dad. .I'd rather starve to 
death!" Lenny said. 

"There's no way I'm buying anything 
at White Castle. I'll stop there, but 
you'll have to use yer own money." 

"Ah, the hell with it. I'll have a 
bologna sandwich." 

"Oh, sure, you'll spend my money, but 
you won't spend your own. Jeeze, I'm not 
the Bank of America!" 

"I don't have money. Dad," Myron said. 

"Well, you'll be satisfied to have 
a sandwich then," Jack said. "You guys 
should be happy that you didn't grov up 
during the depression. I was lucky to get 
one meal a day," 

"Yeah, right," Lenny said unimpressed. 

Jack pulled into a. rest area. "I'm 
gonna call the hotel and double check on 
our reservations." 

As Jack made the phone call, Lenny and 
Myron used the restroom. Jack tried to 
make a collect call, but the hotel did not 
accept the charges, so he used his phone 
card. "Hello. Is this the Jizzington 

The employee answered, "Yes it is." 

"This is Jack Bora. I have reserva- 
tions, for a couple of rooms tonight. I'm 

just double checking on the price. It's 

twenty bucks a night for me, but my 

kids stay free, right?" 

"No, that deal ended last week." 
"Jeeze! What is this crap! You 

can cancel my reservations, I'm going 

home!" Jack hung up and scratched his 

head. "I could have svore that deal was 

good until July 15th!" 

Lenny and Myron came back from the 

restroom. Lenny said, "Well, are we 

all set?" 

"Yes, we are. We're going home." 
"What? What the hell happened?" 
"They said kids don't stay free." 
"Oh shit! Nice vacation. Dad!" 
"I'm sorry, Lenny. . I won't let 

big business take advantage of me." 

Myron said, "Well, at least we can 

go to the local beach and have fun." 
Jack hugged Myron. "That's my 

big boy!" 

Lenny said, "You better get used to 

this Myron. This is the twelfth year 

in a row that the family trip has been 





Selections in the preceding section were approved by foiir of 
the six staff members. The following selections were chosen 
by John Stobart sLLone, although some staff members also 
approved them. 


Nels Nelson 
Jenny Nelson 
Judy Belfield 
Maria Mellinger 
Maria Mellinger 
Judy Belfield 
Jerald Janes 
Msiry Ann DesMarais 
Jerald Janes 
Jenn -n- Mary Ann 
Jenny Nelson 
Maria Mellinger 
Maria Mellinger 
Nels Nelson 
Paul Pritchett 
Maria Mellinger 
Jerald Janes 
Kristen Schaefer 
Nels Nelson 
Erika Nelson 
Maria Mellinger 
Maria Mellinger 
Maria Mellinger 
Maria Mellinger 
Maria Mellinger 

Op inion-Ob s ervat ion- — ~ ■ 19 

Pictures ■ ■ — ■ 19 

Spring Again ■— ■ 20 

An Empty Graveyard- — — 20 

Rabbits Lenny Dreamed Of— ■— — — 21 

. . .And Multiply .—_——-._—— — ,-»„„„„_2i 

With Love — ~ — ^__— — ... ,__„„_„„21 

Composition: What I Am — =- — — =————— 22 

Tales Of A Fallen Romance- — ■ 22 

Stuart- ■ — 23 

Driving In YoTir Car ■ — • — ~ • ~ 2U 

Hi Fidelity—— — .— — .— • 2U 

Not Another Pro-Suicide Story—— • — • — 2U 

Love, Sex, And Death — — — — — .— ■ 25 

Kiss The Ground ■ = 25 

I Scream— — ■ 26 

A Tiny Wall— — — —27 

Help Extraordinary— — .— — -■ . . 27 

Irrelevant—- — =— — . — — — . 27 

Every Note Moves — = • ■ — ■ 28 

Biirn Out- — 28 

Nels Nelson 

Jenny Nelson 



Watching life from inside a car 

Is like watching TV 

To experience what you're seeing 

You have to bathe 

In the dirt of life 

Let it get caught between your toes. 

She asked me to stay just a little 
longer but I didn't have time. It was 
already late, and I had to be ready to go 
by seven. _ 

As I walked down the steps of the 
house, Mrs. Gurney hollered for me to 
come back soon. She had been widowed 



Pictxires , continued 

for a year and my heart went out to 
her; hut at sixteen years old, I simply 
had mjsre important things to do. 

I went over to visit her once a week. 
It seemed she considered me the daughter 
she never had. She always baked some- 
thing fattening, complaining that I was too 
skinny, and insisted I take some home to 
my parents. 

It was sad when I thought of her "by 
herself simply waiting for someone to 
talk to. It was easy to put it out of my 
mind, though, and I consoled myself with 
weekly visits which seemed to get a little 
shorter every time. 

If I'd paid more attention that evening, 
I might have noticed how sad she sounded. 
I may have recognized the crack in her 
voice as she asked me to stay. I may 
have even seen tbhat she was shaJcing more 
fiercely than usual. But I didn't notice. 
I was too afraid my friends would have 
to wait. I was afraid my plains woiild he 

So I left, unaware. 

When I got home at 1:00 the next mor- 
ning. Mom was waiting up for me. Maybe 
it was guilt, but I knew. It seemed that 
Mom was taking over a cake pan Mrs. Gurney 
had sent home with me. She was sitting in 
a chair in the living room alone. 

The funeral was small. I was about 
her only family. At the end of the day, I 
went back to her house to start sorting 
through some things. Beside her end 
table there was a photo album. Inside the 
album were two pictures in one page; one 
of her beside one of me. It was sad, 
but a little consoling. I knew that 
even when she was alone she would look 
at our pictiires and feel better because 
my memory was with her. 

I decided to keep the albtim. I 
knew that was what she wanted; that way, 
I'd never be alone either. By looking 
at the album I'd be with her memory. In 
my opinion, that's what friendship is, 
knowing that you're not alone, even 
when all there is to hold on to is a 



Judy Belfield 


In spring time again 

a mystery moans 

over late June mornings 

like a slowly breathed-out sigh 

in adolescence. 

I am apprehensive 

hesitemtly searching 

the shallow space 

between me and horizon 

for clues about 

this fetal summer — 

what weight, length, sex, 

what color its eyes... 

One summer long ago 

a girl bellyf lopped into the season 

and the sting lingered for years — 

I think I remember it 

some days when spring fattens up 

and everybody can hardly wait 

for the ice-cream man . 

except me. 

Then, a vague melancholy settles 

and I want to know 

who forced me back then back then 

into the water 

clown-faced, unprepared 

into the water 

wanting never never to come up. 

In springtime again 

confessions sprout 

like tulips, 

open their mouths to sunshine 

and the ridicule of rain. 

I pack my throat in cotton, 

as though it kept a precious secret, 

lie down in late evening blooms, 

and dream of drowning. 


Maria Mellinger 


An empty graveyard- 
Entombed angels 
Real faces hidden beneath 
Layers of concrete; 
But no souls are present. 


Maria Mellinger 

Judy Belfield 



Ra1:bits Lenny dreamed of — 

And rabbits he wanted to win. 

A little farm for a few friends. 

And George and the rabbits, too... 

And the rabbits cotild play in the yard. 

Rabbits Lenny dreamed of. 

He wouldn't hurt them. 

Honest, George! He'd be good! 

And he'd play with them again 

On his farm with a few friends 

And the rabbits Lenny dreamed of... 

Only rabbits Lenny dreamed of... 

He could grow alfalfa to feed with 

And hold them in the sun 

Oh, please, let me hold the rabbit! 

Just the little one! 

They'd leave, and he'd behave, George, 

Honest he would. . . 

I have been pregnant 

for several years 

waiting an eternity 

to give issue 

produce anew 

pop, as it were, 

biirst open with creation — 

like a volcano 

or a boil. 

I have been pregnant too long; 

my skin cannot stretch more; 

I cannot walk, 

cannot even get out of this chair. 

My breaths are shallow 


creation is gravely difficult 

seems to be 

killing me 


Jerald Janes 


As if I can help it. 
1 slur my way through the day. 
Alone in an incorrect world. 
It would seem. 

Postpone the future 
Ignore the past 
Terminally in the present. 

I put out a cigarette 
I wash my body. 
I stare in the mirror. 
I am alone. 
I walk to the restaurant. 
I take in Ballet PBS. 
At a totaJL loss for words. 
But rambling. 

I see the stars and realize 

I am nothing. 

I'd think about it. 

But I am too busy vomiting. 

I strike out at the blandness 

While I search for the zero* 

I try to connect 

I scramble to survive. 

Mary Ann DesMarais 


**^f»*#*» The flowers came 

As I knew they would 

And I cried. 

I cried for what was lost. 

And for what was never found. 

The morning dawned 

As I knew it would 

And as it dawned my tears were dried, 

Dawn . . . 

Dawn and another's smile. 

Then summer came 

As I knew it would 

But no summer like the one before. 

No time has gone 

And I must rise. 

Wake to the new light. 

Leave what is past behind. 



Jerald Janes 


Dear Linda, 

The phenomena has escalated since we 
last spoke. Three days ago I had a bizarre 
physio-electronic experience that leaves me 
in need of your legal advice. Here I dwell. 

Watching television in my favorite 
chair, I got up and sat down in my second 
favorite chair. It was close to midnight 
hut not quite eleven. I had one foot in a 
bucket of Aqua Velvet and the other wrapped 
in tin foil, awaiting the holocaust. 

My torso donned a dapper yet disgusting 
Denny Terrio "dance-fever dsmce-off" 1979 
T-shirt and my green and silver parachute 
pants cut-offs. 

I felt groovy. 

The TV Guide was on the ceiling and not 
caring to wake the upstairs tenants I started 
to seach the 26l cable ch a nnels, at random — 

After I signed the proper forms these 
Larrys left my once-lovely lair to 
claim their trucks and leave big tracks 
of no grass but a lotta mud on my lawn. 

So I sit here tonight in my favorite 
chair and ask you, my dear friend, am I 
financially responsible? 




Jenn -n- MaryAnn 


I am the fluttering of a kite yearning 
toward the sky on a breezy summer day. 
I am the swish of my sled skimming 
down a snowy hill. I am the happiness 
I remember when I was praised for 
reading with expression. I am the 
bewilderment I felt when I found out 

I stopped at a home-shopping micro-network Santa Glaus wasn't real. I am the 

with this emcee done up in purple and green 
neon staring at what seemed to be, ME. 

I coiildn't move. The Aqua Velvet 
froze, Denny Terrio was tight against my 
breast, my second favorite chair regressed 
into a stool, and, abducted my attention was. 

Soon, all I was aware of was this sen- 
sation that my free will was depleting. IV^ 
soul was in possession of this angelic image 
in hallucinogenic, telepathic, commercial 
retail . 

The man on the television said, "Don't 
be alarmed; I get paid to do this." I soon 
understood that he meant no harm; he simply 
had a job to do. 

The next few hours are blurry and cra- 
tered in hind-sight. All that I can distinctly 
recall is the memory of myself draining tears 
over a porcelain statue of the Madonna em- 
bracing ELVIS, and a ballooned state of 
pride upon seeing a discounted official I988 
Winter Olympic bidet. 

Regaining consciousness at dawn, I found 
eight rugged men named Larry at my front door 
while their respective delivery trucks idled 
obediently on my front lawn. 

Dozens of boxes were carted into my 
apartment as I sat on what was once again 
my second favorite chair in the utter, complete 
and total, if not partial apathy. 


despair of a fairytale princess lost 
in a swirling fog. I am the laughter 
of ice-skating on the Fox River without 
ice-skates. I am the peacefulness of 
fishing on a still lake in Wisconsin. I 
am the turn of a crisp page in a new 
book. I am the content belonging feeling 
of playing the pisuio. I am the friends 
I've had and the memories they've given 
me. I am the ambitious fever I catch 
to do everything I can possibly cram 
into my life. I am my thoughts. I 
am my dreams. 


Jenny Nelson 

The silence never bothered me. It 
seemed peacefiil, and best of all, it was 
safe. During the times of silence there 
were no accusations, no lies or threats 
or broken promises. Just blissful, 
sympathetic silence. 

Of course that isn't to say there 
hadn't been good times. There had beer 


Tales of a Fallen Romance, continued 

lots of those at first, like the MemoriaJ. Day 

Picnics, it seems, "bring out the romance 
in everyone. The mere idea of a sunny day, 
fried chicken, white wine, and a nap under- 
neath a shade tree can bring a smile to the 
face and a daydream to the mind of even the 
crankiest people. Romance, however, no mat- 
ter how childish it sounds, is exactly what 
we haid; not simply ideals of it, and that 
day couldn't have been more perfect. 

It was a storybook kind of morning. The 
sun was high in the sky, the birds were chirp- 
ing and a lofty breeze lightly shifted the 
slight weight of my delicate curtains. Des- 
pite the perfection of the morning, I did 
not wake up looking like Sleeping Beauty, 
and there was a lot to be done before noon. 

Noon was when he was going to pick me 
up. We'd been seeing each other when we 
could for about six months. He was an elec- 
trical engineer, ta-11, blonde, and in my 
love-dazed eyes, everything I'd ever dreamed 
of. The school girl giddiness I felt was 
insane and somewhat demeaning, but I was 
sure he felt the same, so I coped. 

At 11:55 the doorbell rang, on time as 
usixal. Behind his back was a single rose, 
the perfect gentleman, as usual. It seemed 
he was always doing something romantic to 
impress me, to show he was thinking of me. 
How could I not be losing control of my 

That whole day was perfect. Long walks, 
holding hands, and having contests on the 
swing to see who could go the highest. That 
was the first day he said "I love you." I, 
as a hopeless romantic, cried softly knowing 
I had found my proverbial "Mr. Right." 

We continued on from that day forward 
as "soul mates." One year later he asked me 
to marry him and I cried with all my 
romantic ideals as I walked down the aisle. 
We honeymooned in the Bahamas, bought a 
house in Surburbia, USA, and began living 
happily ever after. 

After six months of wedded bliss, though, 
I began asking myself "happily ever after... 

That was when the silence began raging. 
Thundering down on me like a fallen building, 
it clutched its spiteful fingers around my 
ideaJ-S and strangled my happiness. When there 
wasn't silence, there was anger. His anger 
at me, perhaps, for trapping him. 

Only six months bound to each other and 
I was being blamed for his deceased bachelor- 

hood. For the death of his manhood by 
tying him to responsibilities and my own 
romantic expectations. 

As a silly romantic, I thought every 
day woxild be a Memorial Day Picnic. 
There would always be childish games, long 
walks, and fresh flowers spontaneously 
emerging from under his jacket. The 
flowers, the romance, and the ideals 
ended quickly in thundering silence. 

The silence is welcome thoiigh. The 
memory of long spiteful arguments and 
shattered expectations clutter my mind. 
So when it is silent, the fallen pieces of 
what is left somewhat comfort me. 

So now, a year after the death of 
my girlish romanticism I am capable of 
looking back and laxighing. Laughing at the 
fact that a grown person can believe the 
same things and have the same ideals as 
a little girl playing house. The funniest 
part is that I was surprised when things 
fell apart. I was surprised when the 
happiness ended, the screaming began, and 
the silence surrounded me like darkness 
surrounds a blind person. 

Maria Mellinger 


With a bass that he had no idea how to play 

Slung over his shoulder. 

He posed in his sxinglasses for Astrid. 

At the beach with John, 

He played like a child. 

He looked every inch like James Dean, 

And Jt 65 bought him into the band. 

While he continued living 

The typical starving artist's life. 

And yet there was the restlessness of 

And the terrible headaches. 
Astrid held him on April 10, I962, 
"Stuart died, John. He's gone." 

Maria Mellinger 

Paul Pritchett 



Driving in your car 

With a couple of pills left in my hand- 
Dreaming of another place 
But knowing that speed is not enough 
Because you come hack down 
And the world's still there 
And I wanted to end the pain 

Staring out the cracked windshield 

Watching the trees go passing by 

Like movie stills of our own lives 

And knowing that we couldn't make a difference 

We hoth gave up while there was respect still left 

And I needed to be alone 

But your face is much more than I remembered 
And your lips taste like a salty wine 
And if I look at your for a minute longer. 
When I die you will still be mine 

Driving in your car 

You looked through me and out the window 

Then swallowed the pills that were left in my hand means there is no God. (Another 

Note: All of the characters in this 
story don't commit suicide. 

Hello. I am happy to be allowed to 
speak to the one-hundred happiest people 
in the world. I am Dr. Lisa Edicius. I 
am having my robot assistants pass out 
cyanide capsules to all of you. The 
facts that I've learned in my research 
are depressing. You might decide to 
kill yourself. 

In my research, I've discovered 

that love doesn't exist. 
(Twenty people swallow their cap- 
sules.,) What you think is love is 
a'ctually lust or greed. (Twenty more 
people swallow their pills.) This fact 

isn't the most depressing of the facts 
I'm going to tell you. 

I've also discovered that the human 
body has no soul. (Twenty more people 
take the poison. ) Discovering this 

Hoping to join me in that other place 
And the car went faster than Jimmy Dean's 
We were ready to die right now, not when. 
Knowing we sould rise again 


Nels Nelson 


Ten foot, wood grain 
Synthetic vinyl coated 

Thimble big, lace made 
Snowflake fragile 


ten take the cyanide.) Life is 
utterly meaningless. (Ten more kill 
themselves.) This isn't even the most 
depressing news. 

The most depressing fact is that 
the Dodgers won't win the National 
League pennant. The Mets are better. 
(The last twenty people sweillow their 
pills . ) 

Note: I told you that all the characters 
wouldn't kill themselves. Dr. Lisa 
Edicius didn't have any cyanide cap- 
sules left for herself . On the way 
home she ran into a tree, the police 
determined that it was an accident, 
and not a suicide. 


Maria Mellinger 

J. D. 

There's the silent Mr. Salinger- 
It's no wonder he remains that way; 
No thoughts, no opinions. 
Above all, no voice. 
All is not lost, however, he remains 
Living . 

There's the silent Mr. Salinger- 
It seems he hasn't moved in years; 
Nothing to feel ahout 
And no one to listen. 
All is not lost. He will remain 
Living . 

You may hlame him for the happenings. 
But he merely filled a "blank page. 
I wish he'd speak to clear his name 
And. . . 

No penance will "bring the other msm "back, 

I tinders t and that now. 

No war on words will cease the influence 

A mind can muster. 

All is not lost; the silent Mr. Salinger, 

Sharing his past works, lives. 


Jerald Janes 


I took a trip 
To a foreign place 
I didn't know much 
Except my baggage. 

I was hungry 
Hungry to conquer 
To conquer myself 
While I was hungry. 

I became a hunter 
Riinning through Jung ' s Jungle 
Tearing through the vines 
Falling, scraping, or jumping into the 


I felt the prey nesirby 

My soul peeled back its coat 

I can see. 

I can really see. 

Feels stupid in morning. 
Sleep on, sleep for days. 
Not happy, with the morning. 
Plan next trip. 


Kristen Schaefer 


Kiss the ground, kiss the ground 

I'll kiss the gro\md you've never walked on 

Stand around, stand around 

I'll stand aroiind where you've never been 

I don't like you, I don't like you 
And I don't intend to try 
But when it came to honesty 
Why did you have to lie? 

Your unhealthy attitude 

Just tends to weight me down 

I've never seen someone so thoughtless 

Why do you stay around? 

Kiss the ground, kiss the ground 

I'll kiss the ground you've never walked on 

Stand around, stand ar.ound 

I'll stand around where you've never been 

Nels Nelson 


I scream 

Like ten thousand babies waiting 

For mother 

You vacuum the sound that fell to the floor 


And smile politely 

Erika Nelson 


The old woman moved slowly from plant 
to plant, cooing over the pretty flower- 
ing plants and mxormuring baby talk. She 
wasn't as old as she appeaj:ed to be. Any 
person passing by would guess that she 
was at least sixty, but in fact she was 
only forty-six years old. 

It wasn't just her small frame 
that made her appear older, it was every- 
thing about her. Her hair was brown 
with streaks of gray running through it. 
Laugh lines were prominent on her face 
although she never smiled any more. Her 
once ruby lips were cracked and dry. 
Her cheeks had lost all their color and 
were a pasty white. Her gray smock had 
smudges of potting soil and some smudges 
carried over onto her dark blue cotton 
dress. Just below the crooked hon were 
hose that were snagged and baggy near the 
ankles. The only things neat and clean 
about her were her bright white tennis 
shoes. Somehov, almost miraculously, 
they never seemed to get dirty. 

The old woman had been takigg care 
of plants since her husbsmd's death 
seven years before. She talked only to 
her plants and always with a singsong 
baby voice. The psychologists said she 
went into a state of shock after her 
husband's death. Since then, she had 
been living in the state institution 
and taking care of the plants in the green- 
house there. 

One of her duties in the greenhouse 
was watering the plaints, which she enjoyed 

tremendously. Except for the large 
fern, all the rest of the plants were 
flowering plants. All their pretty co- 
lors soothed her and brightened her spi- 
rits. It was that dreary fern that she 
hated to care for. The plant had been 
brought to the greenhouse shortly after 
she arrived there seven years before. 
She had tried to get rid of the fern, but 
no matter what she did, the plant would 
not die. 

The old woman had long before given 
up trying to kill the fern. So when she 
came at last to the fern, she bent over 
to water it. A few leaves moved softly 
back and forth across her hand as if to 
caress it. It was odd how she never 
talked to this plant, only stared at it 
as if in a trance. Sometimes, she though- 
it was trying to tell her something. It 
was almost as if she knew but could not 
quite grasp the concept. 

Once again she had finished watering 
all the plants and had to return to her 
room. The old woman regretted having to 
leave her greenhouse. She loved it here. 
She always felt at peace there. When 
she reached her room, she lay down and 
closed her eyes for the night, thinking 
only of her greenhouse. Peacefully, she 
drifted off to sleep. 

Somewhere out in the darkness there 
was a movement. He stretched as if wa- 
king for the first time in ages. Tonight 
was the night . He knew it . He felt it . 
He had waited for so long to tell her, to 
let her know the truth. Yet how could he 
tell her that her husband had not actuall; 
died? He knew she would figure it out, 
she had to. He longed for her to 
talk to him again and to caress him lov- 
ingly. Yes, she would figure it out. 

The old woman stirred in her sleep 
and suddenly sat up straight in bed. 
For the first time in years, she smiled. 
The moonlight filtered through the cur- 
tains smd fell upon her face. She dress- 
ed hurriedly, all the while humming soft- 
ly. She csirefully pulled on her white 
tennis shoes that seemed to glow in the 
moonlight. She sneaked outside and _ 
slipped across the compound heading 
towards the greenhouse, constantly 
dodging raindrops . She reached the 
greenhouse and slipped through the 



The Harvest, continued 

The old woman stood just inside the door 
stairing at him through the dim moonlight. 
A puddle slowly formed at her feet as she 
realized he was not dead after all. Quickly 
she ran to him and gave him a quick hug, 
then proceeded to kiss every singe one of 
his leaves. She looked at him lovingly 
and whispered, "why didn't you tell me?" 

Although he didn't answer, his leaves 
were raised slightly as if to shrug. They 
sat there happy, just looking at each 
other as minutes passed. 

The noise of the greenhouse door open- 
ing broke into their world. Two attendants 
walked ov er to the old woman. One grabbed 
her arm to guide her back to her room. She 
resisted siid tried to explain that everything 
was fine. She told them that her husband 
was not dead and that he was here in the 
greenhouse. They would not believe her. 
Finally, they carried her off, kicking and 

As he watched, he noticed that she 
looked better than she had in a long time. 
She was talking, even yelling — and not just 
to plants either. She was finally fighting 
back. She was alive and she looked alive. 
As they took her away, the last thing he saw 
was her tennis shoes. There was mud splat- 
tered on them. The old woman had gotten 
her shoes dirty. 

The next day someone new came to water 
the plants. For months afterward he waited, 
but the old woman never retiirned. He knew 
that finally his wife was sane even if 
no one else believed it. Content for the 
first time in years, he withered up and 
finally died. 


Maria Mellinger 


And it's not easy to take a stand. 
There's no one there to hold your hand. 
Believe in dreams, 
We will prevail. 
Unifonnity' s a tiny wall 
We're well-equipped to scale. 


Maria Mellinger 


Help extraordinary 

Save me from ordinary 

And teach me your numerous ways 

Destroy the same 

And change my name 

And take me through the next phase 

After my face 

Or me displace 

To continue with the change 

Explore my mind 

See what you find 

And shape whatever remains 

Help extraordinary 

Save me from ordinary 

Do with me what you can 

Remove me from here 

Or keep me near 

But make me a pajrt of your plan 


Maria Mellinger 


Lovely Rita and a satin-clad gent- 
Nevennind you-this is irrelevant ; 
Jesse and I will build castles of sand 
In the so far away daydreaming land. 
We'll be left of center by right of choice. 
All of our friends speak irrelevant voice. 
Rita and he can ride the rocking horse. 
The fountain of fantasy is our source. 
Eventually, the supply will be spent- 
Althought I awake, it's irrelevant. 


Maria Mellinger 


Every note moves toward the edge. 
Almost rising, falling again a capella; 
Dancing to the music it created. 
Get the sound, go to the next gig. 
Balance beauty with business and rob 
Every note of its proper place in time. 

In one burst of light 

The match is struck. 

The flame bright enj the surrounding darlmess 

And adds an element to the air. 

For years, fire travels down 

The frail wooden stick. 

The red. 

The white. 

The orange. 

And the blue flames 

Join in their goal: 

To reach all that is around them. 

Touch it with their fire. 

And thus , 

Burn out.